Cindy Vallar

Author, Editor, & Workshop Presenter
P. O. Box 425, Keller, TX  76244-0425

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Thistle's Scotland

Picture of ruins
After rescuing Duncan Cameron from caterans, Thistle takes refuge beneath a broch. Brochs, found only in Scotland, are round drystone towers built during the Iron Age. Access is through a narrow passageway. The tower consists of two tapering concave walls with passageways to upper galleries. The smaller spaces between the two walls may have helped to keep the broch cool in the summer and warm in the winter. The true purpose of the broch is unknown, but they could have been fortified houses lived in year round, rather than a place where the folk sought sanctuary when sea raiders came.  Dun Telve, a broch in Glenelg, is one of the best preserved brochs in Scotland.






Near Castle Urquhart, which overlooks Loch Ness, Duncan encounters the fairy queen who grants his wish.

Built by John Grant of Freuchie, the castle was blown up in 1692 to prevent the Jacobites from seizing it. The lucky visitor might catch a glimpse of the elusive Nessie, who dwells within the murky depths of Loch Ness.
Picture of castle ruins


Picture of cottage


Duncan's cottage, where his grandmother lives, is modeled after a white-washed thatched cottage at Auchindrain Open Air Museum.








Duncan and Rory sleep in a boxbed while at his cottage. This particular boxbed can be seen at the Highland Folk Museum in Kingussie. When Brandubh comes to live with Rory and Duncan, he sleeps in a cradle similar to the one in front of the boxbed.
Picture of Boxbed and Cradle




Picture of cottage


This cottage, which can be seen at Auchindran Township Open Air Museum, is reminiscent of the house Red Padraig and Morna occupy.







Duncan uses a cas chrom to turn the soil prior to planting seed during their stay in the MacOnie village. The words mean crooked foot.

This primitive plow, owned by the Highland Folk Museum in Kingussie, was ideal for use in Highland terrain.
Picture of plow




Picture of waterfall



After Rory's duel with Cathal, Duncan takes her to the Falls of Caig near Achnacarry.






Those Highland clans that supported Prince Charles gathered at Glenfinnan on the shore of Loch Shiel. A descendant of one of the prince's first supporters, Macdonald of Glenaladale, erected the monument in 1815. A Highlander, sculpted by John Greenshields, stands atop the monument.

Picture of
                  Glenfinnan





Picture of outpost ruins Ruthven Barracks, near Kingussie, is the scene of Duncan's first battle.

Initially built in 1718, General Wade enlarged the barracks while he built roads through the Highlands in an attempt to subdue the Highlanders. When attacked by the Camerons in 1745, a sergeant and fourteen men prevented the Jacobites from seizing control. After Culloden, remnants of the Jacobite Army gathered at Ruthven Barracks to rally for the prince. When word came to seek their safety, they blew up the outpost then disappeared into Highland fastnesses.







After the Jacobite Army arrived in Edinburgh, Duncan and Fergus walked up the High Street to Mercat Cross to hear the royal proclamation declaring James, King of Scotland, and his son, Regent.

Most towns had a cross to mark the place where trade was conducted, proclamations were announced, and punishments were carried out. The original Mercat Cross was demolished in 1756. This one was erected in 1910.
Picture of Mercat Cross





Picture of castle
During the siege of Carlisle Castle, Duncan and Fergus spend six frigid and snowy days digging trenches outside the walled English city before Carlisle surrenders to Prince Charles. From there the army proceeds to Derby before retreating into Scotland. When he retakes the city for his father, King George II, the Duke of Cumberland captures and executes many Jacobites left behind to guard the castle.

Scots occupied the border stronghold several times during its long history beginning in the twelfth century, although the Romans were the first to erect a garrison here. Its most famous prisoner was Mary Queen of Scots.






After the Battle of Falkirk Muir, the Jacobites take possession of Doune Castle and use it as a prison. Gregor MacGregor of Glen Gyle, nephew of Rob Roy MacGregor, serves as governor.

Two prisoners gained fame in later years. John Home, who became an author and playwright, escaped by knotting bed sheets together and climbing down the wall. John Witherspoon, who emigrated to America, signed the Declaration of Independence. Although built toward the end of the fourteenth century, Doune Castle didn't become a royal castle until James I's reign.
Picture of castle




Curtain Wall of Doune



The south range of Doune Castle was never completed. The curtain wall showed the room along it was to have four windows.






During Duncan and Fergus' visit to Doune Castle, they dine with the MacGregors in the Great Hall.

At the east end of the hall, the floor is slightly raised. This is where the high table would have been. The door to the left provides access into the lord's apartments.
Great Hall of Doune
                Castle




Picture of cottage


After Rory's vision while riding with Duncan and Gregor Glengyle, they take her to this thatched cottage.

The Old Leanach Cottage, which can be seen at Culloden Battlefield, is the only remaining structure from that time period. It stood behind the British lines on 16 April 1746. For a while it served as the Visitor Centre, but is now furnished as it might have been during The 'Forty-five.






Culloden Battlefield. While an exact count of casualties will never be known, it is estimated as many as 2,000 men died that day. Today the National Trust for Scotland maintains the battlefield and is attempting to restore it to its original appearance. A memorial cairn to the fallen Highlanders was erected on the battlefield in 1881. The Battle of Culloden was the last battle fought on British soil.

Picture of
                  battlefield





Picture of cairn



Grave markers for the various Highland clans that participated in The 'Forty-five are scattered around the battlefield. The clan's standard from Culloden is on display at the Clan Cameron Museum on the grounds of Achnacarry.






During a vision, Rory sees the clear water of a spring turn red with the blood of dying Highlanders.

The body of Alexander MacGillivray, who led the charge against the British Army, was found here after the battle.
Picture of well




Picture of loch


Rory brings Prince Charles to the shores of Loch nan Uamh after he flees Culloden.  Rather than escape to France as planned, he hides on the Isles and in the Highlands for six months before he finally departs.  A small cairn marks the place where the Rising started and ended.








The stone shell is all that remains of the kirk at Balquhidder where Thistle meets Gregor Glengyle to rescue Duncan. Rob Roy MacGregor, his wife Helen, and their sons Coll and Robin Og are buried here.
Picture of kirk


View more pictures of Thistle's Scotland

View pictures of the International Gathering of Clan Cameron


  2000-2006 Cindy Vallar

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Home
About Me
Appearances & Book Signings
Editing Services
E-Books Historical Fiction vs. History My Excerpts: Novels My Excerpts: Short Stories
My Other Writings My Reviews Pirates & Privateers Recommended Books to Read
Research: Favorite Links Research: My Resources Scotland: Clan Cameron Scotland: Highlands Workshop Photos
Scotland: Thistle's Scotland 1 Scotland: Thistle's Scotland 2 Web Rings & Memberships Website Awards
Workshops Contact Me Sign My Guestbook Subscribe to my T&P Newsletter